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It’s not about what you can't do, rather what you can.

Janelle Avery, MS, INHC, Health Coach

When you think about living a healthier lifestyle, does your mind immediately go to the wonderful things that you won’t be able to have, like a super fudgy milk chocolate brownie or the daily sugar fix of Skittles? You are probably already stressed out thinking about how hard this new healthy lifestyle will be and how much you are going to miss the things that makes you happy.


If that is you, I want you to take a minute and take a slow deep breath in and a long breath out. If you need another deep breath in and out, go ahead and take it.


Release the heavy thoughts and emotions that come with that thought.


Begin to open you mind to receive the idea that there is a different approach to this healthy lifestyle that doesn’t bring such heaviness. Rather, it brings in a sense of ease and possibly enjoyment.


Now that you feel a little more at ease, I have the honor to provide you a step by step guide to obtain this healthier lifestyle you desire. By following these steps, you will be on your way to a healthier, more balanced life.


Step 1: Define “healthy” for yourself.


When you think about “healthy”, what comes to mind? Many people and professionals have a different definition for healthy. “Healthy” is such an individualized thing. What is healthy for one person, may not be healthy for another.


For example, it is “healthy” for a prepared marathon runner to run 5 miles a day because they are training for a race. Is it not healthy for a marathon runner with a broken leg to run 5 miles because they have a medical injury that tells them to rest.


Take a minute, and define what healthy looks like for you.


A tip: try defining your definition with both quantitative and qualitative perspectives. It’s not all about weight, but how you feel as well.


Step 2: List two things, per category, that can enhance your current lifestyle: Body, Mind, and Spirit.


If you need help thinking about ideas, I have listed some examples to help get you started. Focus on things to add into your life, not take away.



Eating vegetables at each meal first before eating the rest of your meal

Go on a walk three days a week

Get a massage twice a month

Attend a yoga class once a week

Drink water at every meal time

Take a salt bath

Schedule a hair or nail appointment



Read a book

Listen to podcasts

Use essential oils

See a counselor

Journal your thoughts on paper

Adult coloring book

Learn a new language

Teach yourself a new skill

Practice mindfulness



Listen to worship music


Attend church



Join a bible study group or support group

Create and read scripture cards that help your current situation


Step 3: Think about three barriers that may try to keep you from achieving those goals from step two.


Write them out. What are those scenarios or situations that will steal away your time, money, or efforts to care for yourself?


It is natural to put ourselves on the lower priority list in order to meet someone else’s needs. That’s okay in some cases. If you can identify those barriers ahead of time, you can have a set plan in place to implement when it comes.


Example, some barriers may be:


  • My child is sick and I cannot get out of the house to walk
  • My schedule is too busy
  • I don’t have extra money to spend on myself like I want to



Step 4: List three things you can do to overcome those barriers


For each barrier listed, come up with a solution.  Many of us, by default, don’t pre-plan. We just respond because we think we don’t have another option to fall back on. I like to call this step “my playbook”. That is, having a strategy planned ahead of time for specific situations that helps me to accomplish my goals.


Example, solutions to the barriers in step 4:


  • (a child gets sick and I can get out of the house)


Solution: Do a walking video from YouTube


  • (My schedule is too busy)


Solution: Pray while your in the shower or listen to a podcast while driving to your destination


  • I don’t have extra money to spend on myself like I want to


Solution: Rent library books free of charge,  look up meditations on YouTube, or walk around your neighborhood


Step 5: Every morning or evening look at your list and choose one thing to do for yourself that day (or the following day).


Think about it, plan it, and do it. Planning is key. You are more likely to keep a healthy habit when you find things you actually enjoy and makes you feel good. Naturally, you will crowd out the negative habits and behaviors that are not serving you well when you implement things that are good for you and you enjoy. It’s called the crowding out theory.


For additional support, contact us via email or phone call.


We are here to help you and encourage you along the way.  You are not in this journey alone. There is a whole community on this journey together. We invite you to comment below and share some of the ideas you are going to implement for yourself!


I’ll share mine, I will do more journaling, mindful eating, and do more yoga at least one time each week. What are yours? Leave your comments below. 


July 2, 2020

I’m impressed, I must say. you hit the nail on the head. Your idea is outstanding; the issue is something that not enough people are speaking intelligently about. I am very happy that I stumbled across this in my search for something relating to this.

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